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Honda Odyssey Transmission Problems



  • I have 2002 Honda Odyssey with 97k miles. The transmission started to slip recently, and I took it to a trusted mechanic. He told me this was a widespread problem, especially the breakdown of the 3rd gear clutch that I had. Because Honda says the Electronic Control Module must be replaced with the tranny, he estimated about $4700. He advised that I take it to the dealer and argue for some cost share from Honda. I had some success in that Honda of America agreed that they'd pick up all but $1000. I had been told that included the ECM too, but Honda balked on that. The dealer said it may have miscommunicated on that and split that cost, so I paid about $1500. Just want folks to know that they should press Honda hard if they have a 3rd gear clutch problem. Though, of course, Honda should really extend the warranty generously.

    I think though we should also get this problem into the press. It seems to be a juicy story. Honda, reputed to have high quality products, has produced a dud, but will not own up to it publicly and will not extend the warranty. In the meantime, go Toyota. I think I have my first and last Honda.
  • hondaodyhondaody Posts: 1
    Went in to get an oil change and transmission service and what a suprise! For me that is...Honda service manager informed me that my transmission is leaking!! :lemon: The service manager also informed me that Honda transmission cases are known to have some type of microscopic wholes in them that allow tranny fluid to seep out of the case walls. He told me that this is most likely the source of the leak, but it might be a simple leak from one of the tranny seals. Whatever the case turns out to be. I will most likely be the PROUD :mad: owner of a remanufactured transmission. This really bites!! Will Honda ever resolved the transmission problems they are having? No more Odysseys for me, my first 04' EX-L RES Odyssey needed an oil jet installed onto the transmission to keep the second gear from burning up. Very dissapointed Honda. Honda Odysseys are like a well sculptured Olympic athlete with a bad heart problem. :sick:
  • Ok Folks, My Oddy started to slip when it was 60,000 Now has 66,000,took the vehicle to AAMCO Transmissions,they found a code for the train... They opened the train and founf out that the 3rd Gear was broken,,,Rebuilt the train for $2900+ Taxes,,, They offer a Lifetime warranty,No I don't even feel when the ODDY change gears ,It's really smooth,I am very happy with the job they did, and besides that I bought the Lifetime warranty from the for an extra $900,but we must spread the word about the oddy train problems since repairs are really expensive
  • I had a 2003 Honda Odyssey. The transmission suddenly locked up on a busy California freeway. We almost got into a deadly crash if the drivers did not jammed their their brakes and swerved to the side in time just right before 2007 Christmas.

    I am really sick of Honda's irresponsible attitudes on their design failure. They deliberately concealed the fact so that I did not know the transmission could lock up like that which they have been well aware of for many years and described in their Service Bulletin. I had to battle so much and they finally agreed to provide me with a Honda rebuilt transmission with 3 years/36,000 miles warranty and I was responsible for labor of $924.

    They kept the car for over two weeks. I got back my car middle of January this year. My new rebuilt transmission died on me on March 1. I was truly disappointed in Honda and traded it in with a Dodge at the dealership in Dublin,California. The trade in value was super low because the Honda's transmission was no good.

    I am enjoying my new American car because their service is so good. My new car comes with incredible warranty for as long as I own this car. As you may be aware, Dodge, Chrysler and Jeep now back their cars with lifetime powertrain warranty. Now I know I would not incur any unexpected expenses on this car. There is no more Honda for me because they can go out of their way to conceal information from their affected and potential customers on problems they should be aware with their cars. They don't care about human lives, road safety or reputation. All they care about is profit.
  • jpc01jpc01 Posts: 4
    I have a 2001 ODY EX, less than 80k miles; I am original owner, and I brought the ODY to England with me due to my military assignment. The car's condition is covered under the transmission warranty extension. I've been wrangling with Honda for over 6 months now, but they will not honor their warranty. They tell us on the phone that if we have repairs made and file with them then we might get repaid! They refuse to provide anything written or via email on this "policy" so I have zero guarantees on this "policy." Needless to say the risk factor here is high as is the cost (2 pounds per the dollar) well over $6000!

    We've seen a UK Honda dealer who has inspected. He is not very aggressive on our issue either which is typical UK customer service. We've proposed solutions to Honda US like shipping the part(s) to the dealer here, or my wife and I acquiring the parts and being reimbursed as part of the warranty, but each time they say "no."

    Early in this nightmare, one of the customer service reps quoted a "military and NATO overseas guideline" which basically gave the "We'll pay you back" offer cited above, but the rep "could not" provide us with a copy...all word of mouth over the phone. So, we do not have this policy despite asking.

    I sent Honda US (return receipt), UK and Japan a letter requesting them to fix my problem. Of course we've not seen them do squat with it. Customer service has been horrible...poor follow-ups, changing information, and not offering any constructive help.

    - if I wanted to get the transmission and/or parts and have it shipped, any advice on who has best prices and service? I have a US postal address. Also, do entire "new transmissions get shipped for this repair? I only find parts listed online.
    - any ideas on how to get Honda to help us in England?
    - Our Honda guy here tested and reported, "torque converted clutch system failure 40-1" and "3rd clutch has no pressure" requires replacement of gear box. How safe is van to drive...would it outright fail on us on the road?

    Any advice is appreciated.
  • Wow! I never realized hom many Honda owners are disgusted with their vehicles (and the manufacturer). Our 03 Odyssey's transmission finally died with 66,000 miles and at the dealership now. We did bring it in for the safety recall in 2004. I think they put a band aid on a problem then and Honda knew what would eventually happen... transmission failure. I am experiencing what others experienced on this website from Honda and the dealer. I plan on fighting this... and then selling the van before the newer tranny locks up on the highway doing 70 mph as it had with another owner posted on this website. I find it hard to believe that Honda is not addressing this further. Are they waiting for the big lawsuit when 3 kids get killed when the tranny fails? I don't get it! Maybe it's time to call Ralph Nader!

    Anyway, does anybody know if the warranty was extended for this transmission?
  • panmaxpanmax Posts: 24
    "does anybody know if the warranty was extended for this transmission?"

    No. Free extended warranty because of failures and lawsuit on 1999-2001 4 speed auto to 93 mo and 109K miles for U.S.A. market vehicles. Not Canadian market. Transmission changed to 5 speed in 2002.

    "safety recall in 2004. I think they put a band aid on a problem then and Honda knew what would eventually happen"

    Safety recall is installing an oil jet to lubricate the 2nd gear so it will not lock up from no lubrication. Common failure is third gear clutch. A totally different problem. Third gear clutch overheats, prematurely wears out, slips and clogs the transmission with clutch junk. Not cured by the oil jet.
    I am in the same boat as you, owner of failed Odyssey transmission.
  • Good news! Honda offered to reimburse us 75% of the cost of a replacement transmission. Still double checking on reimbursement of rental. We're still in negotiations about 100% reimbursement. That would be great news!
  • chiodychiody Posts: 3
    Recently returned from the dealer with a new remanufactured tranny and torque converter in our 01' with 102K miles replaced at no cost due to the recall and lawsuits.

    I've maintained this Ody with more than the required Z1 drain and fills (every 7.5K-15K-singles, 2 3X complete exchanges) plus have had a Magnefine filter downstream on the return line and had hoped for a longer life but no go. This was the 1st replacement tranny FWIW.

    For the 1st 85K, original tranny functioned flawlessly. The last 17K, I perceived a noticeable whine in 1st gear that increased in pitch till the shift. Also at highway speeds for the last 5K was a whine in 4th gear in overdrive between 75-80 mph. I'd imagine THIS was a sure indicator of something about to happen as to hear it inside with all the road and mechanical noises abound, it must have been pretty loud after all. Shifting between F/R has been fine with no clunking even on sub-freezing days though.

    Last Friday I drove out on a typical 20 degree morning and within 1/4 mile the TCS, CEL, and D4 light came on after I went over our alley speed check bump. As I tried to turn left, the tranny slipped as if it was in neutral though the vehicle progressed slowly. Upon shutting off the engine and immediately restarting, the CEL remained and all lights turned off.

    Interestingly, the rest of the weekend for over 300 miles of driving the tranny functioned as before with no more problems. Of course that morning I took it in and the dealer started the paperwork to authorize a replacement.

    Upon notifying me of the part arrival, dropped it off on Tues. morning with the anticipation of completion by Wed. evening, which WAS accomplished.

    Upon driving off the lot, I immediately pulled over to inspect things. Was curious to see what they did with my Magnefine filter and noted a entirely new return line installed by the radiator with the old output line remaining.

    I then listened carefully and drove for about 20 blocks starting and stopping shifting through 2 or 3 gears. The 1st gear whine was still there though it was hardly noticeable. Shifting was smooth and positive as expected. Upon reaching the on ramp of the expressway I eased on in 2nd gear and punched it to check downshifting with a positive smooth engadgement and perfect 6K rpm upshift at about 50 mph. Proceeded to drive between 70-90 mph to check on the high speed whine and noted it had all disappeared.

    Arriving home I drove onto the ramps to inspect underneath out of curiosity. Interestingly this trannies case had not been repainted but was rather quite dirty. I noted the new drain bolt and many of the mounting bolts had new white paint on it. The sub case housing the torque converter was marked "new" and definitely looked it. Also noted a series of white Honda markings and numbers were on several locations.

    Had left the vehicle in park during this examination for about 15 mins. having the fan cycle on and off for several cycles.

    Then I noticed some tranny fluid had formed a small droplet between the torque coverter housing and engine! I wiped off the area and observed for another 10 mins. and it seems like there is some very minor leak....DRATS! Not the way to end this saga!

    Perhaps there was some fluid spilled from the exchange? Nevertheless I will watch carefully the next day or so and if it continues, will have the dealer address this issue.

    Upon checking out had me sign a work order outlining Honda's costs but I was not allowed to keep a copy? Mine had the same information but no figures listed, so I took it upon myself to write them on my form just for reference.

    Below is the pertinent data with the INTERNAL costs for this exchange and what Honda is ALLOWING this dealer for labor rates/reimbursement:

    Tranny/Torque Converter Exchange Kit - $1,370
    Labor at 6.5 hrs. - $632

    Wheel alignment .6 hrs. - $58
    Clean Rad/Tran Cooler .3 hrs. - $29

    ATF Z1 $7 Qt. - $36

    Freight $107

    Note the sub $100 shop rate, which is LESS than what they usually charge...Chicago has some pretty humongous labor rates....

    In conclusion, this tranny shifts really nicely and all the quirks of the old one are essentially gone. Just will monitor the leak and address it if it remains....

    Morning After Followup Report....

    Last night before I took it out for a 26 mile errand, a quarter sized spot of tranny fluid was observed on the floor. Confirmed the source was the tranny/block location.

    Returned to see that engine area was dry, perhaps due to the wind from the drive?

    8 hours later this morning, NO MORE TRANNY FLUID, on the floor nor at the tranny casing/engine block!

    Will continue to monitor but feel much better now.....
  • nash1234nash1234 Posts: 22
    Can you tell me which dealer this was? I also live in Chicago.
  • I just bought used 2000 Honda Odyssey with 98K miles. I don't know if the first owner had the transmission replaced or not, but he had water pump replaced at 80K miles (without timing belt replaced). His dealer said the belt was still good.

    I have question:

    It takes all the way up to 3500rpm before my van changes to second gear from full stop. Is it normal? If I don't push it hard, it changes to second gear around 2500rpm. My van is running ok, but I want to know if that is normal. Please advice!

    Thank you,

  • blackexv6blackexv6 Posts: 503
    Your shift point is normal.

    Have you read the posts in this forum about the transmission problems? You have 110k mile warranty on your transmission. See this website link title

    My advice: spend $60 take the van to your local Honda dealer & ask them to check the transmission for you. Doing this will help when you fight the battle for reimbursement when the your tranny fails & it will fail shortly. You now have paperwork ammunition showing that it was checked by Honda.
  • kennynmdkennynmd Posts: 424
    I know its kinda early, but has anyone had problems with the 08 tranny issues? Did Honda do anything different for the 08's compared to the 07's? Wife really likes the look and convenience of the Ody compared to the Sienna but I'm in limbo because of all the problems. I have always been fond of Toyotas although my Sequoia had to get the oxygen sensor replaced at 20k. Thanks to all who will reply!
  • I would recommend a Dodge Caravan. It is cool. Besides, it comes with lifetime powertrain warranty. Give American cars a chance. You would be very pleased with them.
  • chiodychiody Posts: 3
    With easy acceleration, I can shift to 2nd below 2K. Moderate pedal pressure will move the shift point upwards of 3K. However with the majority of instances, the shift occurs around 2.2K.

    These shift points occurred with both trannys.

    The most disconcerting thing was there no hint of impending failure other than a whining in 1st gear and at 75-80 mph.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    AGREE except all Caravans are now called GRAND Caravan. A T&C clone is equally reliable. :shades:

    WHY buy an Odyssey when the Odysseys are having too many transmission failures?
  • dino24tdino24t Posts: 5
    Two days ago our van started slipping out of gear, so we took it in. In September 2007 we took it in for the recall and had the new part added. Now 6 months later the transmission is FAILING at 60,000 miles (actually started at 59,980 and it hit 60,000 by the time we got it to the dealer). 2003 is not in the lawsuit apparently, but it seems that the problems extended well past 2001.

    Honda says it isn't under warranty and wants to charge me $3,200. They also mentioned that the motor mounts are bad and need replacing (what do the motor mounts do?). I also spent about $60 I think to have the break switch replaced 5,000-10,000 miles back.

    The dealer is currently submitting a GOOD WILL request to Honda to see if they will pay for any of the repairs. Seems to me this is a cop-out to alleviate a lot of cost that they should be paying because they know there is a problem.

    Has anyone talked about another Class Action lawsuit to cover the remaining of the problem years?
  • dino24tdino24t Posts: 5
    Did the dealer do all the work for you under a GOOD WILL form or did you contact National Honda number? What number did you contact if you went straight to National Honda?

    Same issue for me at 60,000 miles and had the replacement part handled. I have a case number with the 800 customer service number on Honda's main site and the dealer has put in a GOOD WILL form request.

  • Both. The regional Honda rep was at the dealer where our vehicle was at and authorized a 75% reimbursement off the cost of a warrantied transmission. Of course, we wanted 100%. His decision superceded American (National) Honda's case worker. There were cases on this site where owners got 100%. I guess it all comes down to your relationship with your dealer i.e. required service, etc. My wife did all the work, I don't have the 800# handy. I had seen it while scrolling thru messages on this site. I'll email it when I find it.

    There should be a class action suit to include the 2003 model year. It appears the problem was never truly fixed and we're getting sold a bag of goods. Good luck!
  • dino24tdino24t Posts: 5
    Thanks for the info. I do agree that there should be another class action lawsuit to handle the rest of the problem years. I wonder who handled the first case and if they would be interested in taking Honda on again. Are class action lawsuits generally handled pro-bono because the lawyers plan to recoup their money from the companies? Hopefully that is the case...I would love to get the ball rolling on this if it isn't going to cost me.
  • We all need to find a way for another class action lawsuit. I just had to have my 2003 honda oddssey transmission, with only 65k on it, replaced by american honda they would only cover 40% of the cost, because I never did any transmission flushes at Honda or any work at the Honda dealerships way to expensive. I do all my oil changes and fluid changes my self, and did not have my receipts for the transmission fluid. American Honda did say if they have a recall on the transmissions for this year they would pay me back the $1700 for the transmission. I don't believe them.

    Let the lawsuits begin!
  • I'll do some research into that tonight or tomorrow and try to make contact to the group who pushed for the warranty extension on the previous models. If I have any luck, then I'll post contact info for all to see to get the ball rolling. Strength in numbers!
  • jtk152jtk152 Posts: 139
    "I know its kinda early, but has anyone had problems with the 08 tranny issues? Did Honda do anything different for the 08's compared to the 07's?"

    I think I've heard of one 2007 transmission issue on another board, but I have a feeling this was not the most 'reliable' data. :mad: There are a few posts buried in this thread on this, but Honda put an entirely different trans in the 2007+ Odys. It is derived from the Ridgeline 4x4. The 2007+ Ody trans has an entirely different case and an additional gear shaft (went from 3 to 4). This helps better distribute internal loading and helps with lubrication and cooling. 2007+ also has a much easier to service transmission filter. It's a 'drop-in' type of filter element that loads into a housing on the case. Honda had to do something drastic if they want to maintain any type of reputation.

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 25,358
    probably long overdue, but it isn't a component that is easily changed on the fly!

    and given all of the problems with the old style, I don't think redesigning it should be considered drastic!

    2015 Hyundai Sonata 2.4i Limited Tech (mine), 2013 Acura RDX AWD (wife's) and 2015 Jetta Sport (daughter's)

  • Thank you for your recommended.

    I had multi-point inspection done at dealer today and paid $81.66 for transmission diagnosis because it rises between 3500rpm to 4000rpm to shift to 2nd gear. And, with easy acceleration, it shifts to 2nd gear below 2500rpm. Again, my van has 98,250miles. !!! No engine light on yet !!!

    Here was what the honda technician wrote:
    "Verify that the tranny have late shift from 1st to 2nd gear. Slip into 3rd gear. Check ATF. Found ATF got burning smell. Check for DTC. No DTC store in PCM. Check EGR voltages. EGR voltages with spec. Recommend replace transmission."

    The dealer's asking for $4,000 :cry: to replace my tranny and $900 for timing belt. The supervisor will call Honda rep. Monday morning to find out if they're going to cover my tranny and the percentage. FYI, previous owners bought this van on 03/31/2000.
    When I asked the broker if there was any problem with the tranny, he said "No". So, do you think I can ask him to pay/share the cost to replace my tranny?

    Please advice!

  • ody4me2ody4me2 Posts: 1
    I have a 2000 Odyssey with 103k on it. We started hearing a noise at high speeds and then another noise - repeated clicking - while backing up. Took it to Honda dealer and they said I need timing belt package and new transmission...that a gear must have broken off. They said that Honda would pay for the transmission because I'm only a year out of warranty and I would have to pay for labor only....$700. The timing belt package is $1100.
  • 2002odie2002odie Posts: 32
    Although it's about time for a timing belt at 103k miles, don't you think $1100 is a bit $$$$?

    If you look up the part (timing belt), it's under $50.00.
    That's a lot of labor they are charging, especially if they already have it all apart for the tranny replacement...are they also replacing the water pump for the $1100?

    Now on the other hand, $700 for a tranny replacement is a GREAT deal!

    Looks like the dealer is really trying to get some more money out of this transaction.
    I am surprised they didn't try to pull the "you need new motor mounts" line...
  • dino24tdino24t Posts: 5
    What is it with the Motor Mounts? Is that just a load of crap they are feeding us. Is there generally anything wrong with them and if so...what do they do? Hole the motor in the car or something? sorry for my mechanical stupidity, but it just seems from the posts that this is a frivolous line the dealer likes to feed us.
  • 2002odie2002odie Posts: 32
    Crash course on motor mounts:

    The motor mounts stabilize the vibrations given off by the engine.
    In particular there is one at the front (behind the radiator on 2002+ models, I think on the passenger side on 1999-2001 models...) that is actually active and controlled by the computer.
    It's a fluid filled hydraulic motor mount with a vacuum line going to it that will become stiffer or softer depending on what the computer tells it to do...
    If it's bad, you can easily tell, have someone watch the motor mount while someone else revs the engine above 1000 RPM (in park of course!)
    If bad, you will see the engine tilt up and down at the motor mount, if good, the mount should hold the engine steady...

    In my case, the dealer swapping the tranny said both the front and rear were no good and both needed replacing. They wanted another $500+ to replace them (at a "discount" since they were already in there swapping the tranny...see my previous posts on my tranny swap nightmare....)

    Bottom line, I bought the parts myself online and got a second opinion and turns out only the front needed replacing, while the rear one "still looked like brand new".
    So it just confirms my suspicion that the original dealer was out to hose me...
  • gavanmomgavanmom Posts: 32
    As for the 08's I can't say, but I am VERY RELIABLE and am willing to share the 20 pages of dealer shop reports with anyone wishing to see them concerning my 2007 that is on it's 3rd new transmission and awaiting a lemon law arbitration hearing anyday. We bought brand new <7 miles off the lot and the first tranny started acting up before we hit 1500 miles. Every other van we've owned in the 16 years of driving minivans has made it to 100 - 130K + and I've never had to replace a transmission. Plymouth, Chevy, GMC, Dodge and Ford. We are a military family and travel alot! Mileage and reliability are why we bought the Honda....not 3 transmissions in less than 12K miles and over 36 days in the shop in the first 9 months. Honda had every chance to make this right, all we wanted was a swap after the 2nd tranny was replaced, they don't do that was what we were told. "Don't worry about it, you have the 120K warranty, it will cover any repairs." was the reply from honda's customer rep.


    Want a reliable source for the 2007 tranny issues, email me at I've got 20 pages worth of reliable infor from our local Honda service shop. Dawn
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